Resources for Researchers

This page provides links to resources and documents that explain methods, describe tools, and highlight considerations for using lidar data in research. Other resources are highlighted on the resources for students and resources for educators, which we encourage users to explore. To learn more about using OpenTopography or lidar data, please visit the tutorials page. If you have any questions, visit our Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) or email us at

OpenTopography Community Publications

OpenTopography maintains a list of peer reviewed publications that have used OpenTopography data or services, you can browse this list via our OpenTopography Google Scholar page. Publications about OpenTopography can be found here.

High Resolution Topography Research Resources

NCALM Seed Grants
Many datasets available on OpenTopography were collected for graduate students via the National Center for Airborne Laser Mapping's (NCALM) Seed program. Each year, NCALM surveys up to ten projects (each generally covering no more than 40 square kilometers) for graduate student PIs who need Airborne Laser Swath Mapping (ALSM) data. For more information about the program and how to submit a proposal, visit NCALM's Seed Program.

OpenTopography Tools
The OpenTopography Tool Registry provides a community populated clearinghouse of software, utilities, and tools oriented towards high-resolution topography data (e.g. collected with lidar technology) handling, processing, and analysis. Registered tools range from source code to full-featured software applications.

OpenTopography open source software can be found on our OT Software page.

OpenTopography APIs and resources for developers are described on our Developers page.